15487/Peter's Birthday Part 1

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Peter's Birthday Part 1
Date of Scene: 16 August 2023
Location: American Museum Nat. His.
Synopsis: Peter's Birthday Party goes off without a hitch! Aunt May's baked goods are a hit, and so many people turned out to wish him a happy birthday! It's really too bad the party's about to go sideways...
Cast of Characters: Ghost Spider, She-Hulk, Iron Man, Spider-Man, Firestar

Ghost Spider has posed:
The evening's gentle hum vibrates through Manhattan, a buzz of activity amplified by the glittering city lights. Gwen, looking radiant and secretive, ushers Peter into a waiting cab. "I'm taking you out for a birthday dinner," she'd teased earlier, her voice dripping with mischief.

The cab maneuvers through the congested streets, the city's iconic skyline framed through its windows. Peter tries to guess their destination, throwing out names of restaurants and bistros. With each wrong guess, Gwen's smile grows broader, a sparkle of excitement in her eyes.

As the vehicle finally pulls to a stop, the grand facade of the institution looms before them, majestic and seemingly out of place for a birthday dinner. More than that, it was closed. Gwen leans close, her voice soft with anticipation. "Trust me. There's something inside I want you to see."

Upon entering, the museum's grand hall is shrouded in darkness, the shadows seemingly stretching and merging, giving the place an ethereal, otherworldly feel. Their footsteps echo, creating a rhythm as they make their way further inside.

Then, as they round a corner, a sudden explosion of light and sound hits them. "SURPRISE!" a chorus of voices erupts, shattering the stillness. Faces familiar and beloved pop out from behind exhibits, from the corners of the hall, and from places Peter hadn't thought one could hide.

The pulsating beat of a song he recognizes fills the air, setting a celebratory mood. Everywhere he looks, there are friends and loved ones, faces beaming with joy and mirth. Harry, Flash, Glory, Liz, and Betty, among others, are all there, grinning and waving. Even Aunt May, right at the front.


Ghost Spider has posed:
Once the initial greetings have been made, the party shifts into full swing.

Within the grand corridors of the Natural History Museum, a celebration like no other unfolds. The usual austere ambiance of hallowed scientific history is disrupted, momentarily replaced with pulsing neon lights that dance off the fossilized remains of ancient creatures. The cerulean and gold streams of light playfully streak across the grand marble columns, as the quiet rumble of bass resonates from a distance.

On the museum's main floor, a DJ, ensconced within a nest of turntables and mixers, manipulates the tracks, expertly weaving beats that seem almost organic. The music is a symbiosis of past and present, remixes of classic songs that echo off the vaulted ceilings and reverberate through the great halls.

Strategically placed mood lighting illuminates the alcoves where prehistoric creatures are usually the sole stars. Tonight, they play audience to a gathering of New York's young elite. Private security personnel, dressed in sharp black suits, maintain a watchful presence, discreet yet visible, ensuring that while the party may go wild, the relics of history remain untouched.

As guests mill around with drinks and snacks (baked goods provided by Peter's very own Aunt May), their faces register a mix of awe and excitement. They've been to parties, yes, but most have never been to one where a T-Rex skeleton acts as the centerpiece. Harry Osborn, dapper in a black suit, clinks glasses with Flash Thompson, who despite his usual jock attire, tonight opted for a more refined look. Liz Allan and Glory Grant are deep in conversation, their dresses contrasting yet complementary, with the former in a sleek navy number and the latter shimmering in gold.

Mingling among the crowd, a group of tall, elegant figures stands out. These are Gwen's friends -- the models -- each a living sculpture, their attire eye-catching and party-appropriate. They chat animatedly, their laughter ringing out as they swap stories from shoots and shows.

Yet, despite the extravagance and the sheer grandiosity of the affair, there's an underlying warmth that can't be ignored. In a corner, next to a diorama depicting early human life, Aunt May, dressed in her best floral dress, dotes over a table laden with baked goods. The soft aroma of cookies and pies fills the air, providing a homey counterpoint to the opulence. Guests gravitate towards her, drawn by the sweet treats and her even sweeter disposition. Betty Brant is already there, sampling a cookie and nodding in appreciation.
She-Hulk has posed:
Models and beautiful people check.. Small mousy Girl with a pony tail trying her best not to spill anything on her work blouse also, check! Jen is doing her best to get some food before she tries to find a spot to much on those snacks.. Aunt May's snacks are the best, after all . As she moves around, " sorry .. excuse me.. lordy, your tall .. " Stumble and ack, try not to drop your plate.. r
     Poor Lawyer Jen is doing her best, but those models intimidate her, not that she'd admit it. So she sticks close to aunt may.

Iron Man has posed:
What birthday party would be complete _without_ a visit from Tony Stark? Clearly not this one anyway. An all to ubiquitous black limo pulls up out front and none other than Happy gets out, moving around let his boss out and take a moment to look around as if he's going to give _someone_ the stink eye - but there's a surprisingly delightful _lack_ of press to defend Tony from so.. he just waits as his boss disembarks, claps Happy on the shoulder, and starts up the stairs into the museum at a trot.

Nope, he wasn't here early, is in fact arriving quite a bit later than fashionably late, but .. well - maybe he won't be too much a distraction from the true main attraction of the event. Stepping through the doors into the main room Tony takes an immediate left, aiming to skirt around the room as he gets a look at who's here, how things are progressing, and ..

"Jarvis, you're gonna play Pepper for me, right? Keep me up on the who's who, and whatnot?" Tony says, under his breath, to apparently now one at all as his gaze moves about the room, enriched by the AR capabilities of the fashionably oversized glasses he's wearing.

<< Of course, Mr. Stark >> Those with overly sharp hearing might overhear the AI speak into an almost invisible ear bud in Tony's ear.
Spider-Man has posed:
At least he knew that they were going out for dinner, right?

While Peter might have insisted he didn't need any sort of fuss made over his birthday, regardless of whether he was turning thirty or not, he knew it was pretty much a given there would be at least a couple of surprise. He could, afterall, be relatively sure that Gwen would not just let it pass by as if it were nothing at all, and he was absolutely certain that Aunt May wouldn't allow it.

So he was prepared for at least a small get together, maybe dinner back in Queens with a few of their friends. Maybe a night out before doing that on the weekendm taking at least a few hours to grab something to eat despite all of the many, many things going on in the city that they're trying to deal with.

As such, at least he's not dressed as a complete schlub. He might not quite blend in with the glitz and glamor of some of Gwen's model friends, but Peter doesn't clean up too bad.

Of course, he was expecting something distinctly on a smaller scale.

As far as venues go, it would be hard to find something more appropriate then the Natural History Museum. SCIENCE! Maybe an actual lab would be suitable, but all of these people crammed in with a host of volatile chemicals and scientic apparatus just seems like the perfect recipe to spawn his next villain.

And what kind of birthday present would that be?

Pete at least has to have some inkling of what's up as they stop in front of the grand facade that makes up the museum's entrance, but Gwen's enthusiasm is pretty infectious. And besides, it might be a nice change to have a *good* surprise for a change.

Still, the welcome from so many familiar faces -- and a lot of strange ones -- not to mention the extreme makeover that the museum has received is st ill a little overwhelming. That something was definitely coming might have been obvious. But definitely not the scale.

So no Pete walks through the main hall of the museum, a sort of bemused smile on his face, greeting a few of those old friends and giving a small shake of his head. "How on earth did you possibly find the time to arrange all of this?" he asks Gwen with a quiet laugh, slowly picking his way through the crowd towards Aunt May.
Ghost Spider has posed:
"It's called delegating. You should try it some time," Gwen chides playfully, hooking her arm into Peter's and pulling herself close as she beams up at him. "But you have /no/ idea how happy I was when you said you fixed the leak at May's. I was so worried she wasn't going to have time to finish all the baking she said she wanted to do. I /might/ have been texting her while you were there and not telling you..."

Gwen's lips roll in a slightly guilty way, pursing to try to hide the smile, though it still shines in her eyes.

"The DJ's a friend of Betty's. Harry knows a guy that knows a guy and got us the space. May's been baking her fingers to the bone... speaking of."

Soon, Gwen and Peter have navigated their way through the crowd to the little corner where Aunt May tends to her table, and with her signature warmth, moves towards Peter to give him a hug, passing Gwen a tray of freshly baked cookies. "Happy Birthday, dear. I thought the museum could use a touch of home," she says.

Meanwhile, though she might be a model herself (at least part time), Gwen isn't quite so... decked out for a party as her friends. She's dressed in much the same way Peter is, comfortable yet nice enough for a pleasant evening out. She shifts that tray to one hand to keep it handy for anyone that might want to grab a cookie, but she offers the other to Jennifer with a warm smile.

"Hi," she says warmly. "There's /so/ many people. I don't think we've met. I'm Gwen."
She-Hulk has posed:
Jennifer Walters Blinks mid munch of an aunt may cake.. Cough and quickly rubs her hands on her hips " Right, sorry.. I mean, right.. you're his " She blinks " Uhh, Jen nice to meet you. " She holds out her hand after finding a spot to put down her tray. as she goes to shake the hand.. " I don't think we've had the pleasure at all , Your stunning by the way " .
Iron Man has posed:
As he makes his way around the room, Tony can't help but garner _some_ attention, a model here, some other even moderately observant person there, but he _does_ try to keep any potential hubub down to a minimum - again, it's not _his_ birthday. No where near the right decibel level and/or debauchery level for that sort of thing.

A drink, something non-alcoholic, a bite or three of food, and maybe another bite are picked up and consumed along the way as Jarvis quietly notes people in Tony's ear.

<< And that's Peter's Aunt May ... you know Jennifer Walters, of course >>

"I.. yes, right, I do."

<< That's Gwen Stacy with Peter, she's the one that sent the invitation. The .. models you were keeping such focus on there as you walked in are all friends of hers >>

"What - that was quite the crowd, had to make sure you got the faces.

And just about then Tony's probably within sight and sound of Peter, Gwen and the rest as they approach Aunt May.
Spider-Man has posed:
Delegate? Him? Goodness gracious no!

Given just how much of a loner he was growing up, it took Peter a very long time to open up and even expand his circle of friends. Not to mention just how long it took for him to get used to working with others as Spider-Man. Oh, he certainly had his run-ins with other heroic types -- on more occasions then he'd care to count. And while they usually worked out in the end, there was a lot of tension at first meeting more often then not. Usually in part because of his nature and reputation, leaving at least some of those in his circles a little suspicious of him.

Oh, so many misunderstandings.

Fortunately he has started getting a little better about that. Having other Spiders around, starting to build up relationships with some of the others who take to the streets and skies to help and defend others have broken down a few of those walls.

Still, Pete shoots a wry look Gwen's way. "I'll work on that," he promises. "Still, this is all amazing. I know I said I didn't want any sort of fuss, but this..." he says, swinging his gaze around, letting it linger on that prominent display of the dinosaur, all lit up in pulsating neon. "This is incredible. Thank you. I'm sure May's thrilled," he says wryly.

She's his Aunt, and really closer to the only real mother he's ever known. She has a right to be excited and doting.

"Hi Jen," Pete offers up with a smile before he turns his gaze over towards his Aunt, reaching for her hands for a moment before stepping in to wrap arms around her. "Aunt May. Thank you so much. Look at all the baking! You didn't have to go to such a fuss!" he insists.

"Oh Peter, don't be silly. It's your birthday. Your parents, your uncle, they would all be so proud of you if they could see you now," the older woman gushes, blinking eyes that are more then a little glistening before she steps back and casts a fond and approving gaze towards Gwen. "You did a lovely job dear. I couldn't have hoped for more," she says before turning back towards that table full of bake goods, scooping up a tray of turnovers and immediately trying to press them on the trio gathered close. "Eat, eat. You're all so skinny. You especially Peter. You are still so thin. You need to eat more," she says reproachfully.

Pete is not exactly the skinny little kid he once was. But clearly that's never going to change in his Aunt's eyes. He probably wouldn't have it any other way. "Fine, fine, twist my arm why don't you," he says with a smile, pressing a kiss to his Aunt's cheek.

Then, spotting Tony slowly making his way through the crowd he glances towards Gwen wryly. "Wow, you really hunted down everyone, didn't you?" he says, lifting a hand. "Mr. Stark, wow, thank you for making the time to stop by."
Ghost Spider has posed:
"You're welcome," Gwen would say to Peter's thanks, her eyes conveying the rest -- that, and a playful bump of her shoulder. "You seemed like you could use a reminder that it's just you against the world. Granted, it hasn't been as bad as when I first caught back up with you and Gus, but still... you're very loved. Happy Birthday, Nerd."

But then they'd found May and Jen and most of the calories in New York City, which were promptly being thrust upon them.

"I am," Gwen laughs softly at Jen's unfinished assessment. "It's such a pleasure to meet you." But that compliment earns another laugh, as well as a little demur of her eyes. "Thank you. But you're... famous. It's kind of easy to feel daunted by how many incredible people Peter knows."

Speaking of which...

Peter was slipping away from her after speaking to his Aunt, which didn't go unnoticed, but it was who he was speaking to that seemed to propel her back into hostess mode, offering an apologetic smile to Jen.

"Please, excuse me for just a moment..."

She, too, passes Aunt May, and she gives the other woman a one-handed hug, still holding that tray of cookies like a serving girl. /Those/ were notably absent. Unlike a Stark party, everyone was expected to get their own food. There was only such much money they could throw around, after all.

"Thank you, May. I couldn't have done it without you."

But even with just that, she's moving to catch up to Peter. No doubt JARVIS has already given him the full rundown -- part time researcher at Alchemax, Masters in Biochemistry with a PhD in-progress, drummer for the local band the Mary Jane's since high school, part time fashion model.... and that didn't even include her extracurrical activities as Ghost Spider! When /did/ she find the time to plan all this?

Still, as she steps up next to Peter, she offers that beaming smile and lowers the plate of cookies. "Thank you for coming, Mr. Stark. Would you like one of May's /famous/ chocolate chip cookies?"
She-Hulk has posed:
Jennifer Walters Blinks "Me? " she asks, surprised at being called famous. " Oh right, other me," she chuckles. " Yeah .. well, not the party type that would work if I was green," She chuckles. " besides, somebody would do something stupid, and oh .. right, yeah, bai " she says, ackward wave.. yep also a fellow nerd like peter as she sighs and turns back to her plate of goodies.. She looks around, trying to find a good wall to stand at, knowing that's where she's gonna end up.
Iron Man has posed:
There's a lot of thought out there that Tony is .. well the utterly iconic billionaire playboy, and in a lot of cases those thoughts would be _quite_ correct. Probably even more so only as long as a few relatively short years ago they'd've been more correct than not.

Now, however, despite all of that - one that knows him, or has seen him take on the full weight of his role in the Avengers, they'd know better. So, while he does appear to be just having a good time - visiting a bit with guests here and there, there are some things to note by watchful eyes.

First, he takes a moment to greet Aunt May, "You _must_ be May - though I'd've sworn I was told to be looking for someone older, certainly not as lovely a woman as you. I'm sure you're proud of Peter - and you very much should be. " A pause, his voice lowers conspiratorially, "I hope to be able to convince him to let me pay him for at least some of his time that he's working at the Stark labs, amidst everything else that keeps him so busy." - and then with a few more quiet words he pulls himself away with a clearly practiced ease.

Peter and Gwen are given a smile and an _intense_ look that can probably be felt through the glasses he wears - the focus of his gaze all to clearly on each of them in turn as he reaches out with one hand to clap Peter on the shoulder companionably and offer his other hand to Gwen in greeting. "Peter, looking good. Keeping busy too if everything I've heard is even just a part of things. You should stop by the Tower, been a long while since we caught up." A pause, "Gwen, a pleasure..thank you for the invite, Pepper and Jarvis both fought the good fight in keeping some time free for me this evening. And .. _sure_ ... a cookie sounds great." Most notably he takes one of the cookies from the tray that's _almost_ hidden under a few others, also furthest from the edge of the plate that Gwen offered him. Seems rumors are true, he really doesn't like things handed to him - but maybe this awkward bit of taking what's offered satisfies the idiosyncrasy.

And finally, once his hand's retrieved, and without fully breaking 'contact' with Gwen and Peter he flashes one of those famous smiles of his at Jennifer, "Jen, good to see you. Keeping busy?"
Spider-Man has posed:
Given that he's wanted by the authorities and that all of his oldest and most dangerous enemies seem to be crawling out of the woodwork -- and a few new ones as well -- Peter is actually feeling pretty good about himself, and how things are going.

Of course Gwen's positive demeanor and frequent reminders that all is not just constant darkness and despair have a great deal to do with that. It probably also helps a lot that more then ever before, it doesn't feel like he is trying to shoulder the responsibilities of the entire world all on his own.

Again, Pete flashes that smile towards Jen. "I imagine that in legal circles you're pretty well know as well. Or just the public consciousness in general. I'm always surprised when someone knows me from my work. And I'm the guy behind the lense, not in front of it," he notes. Well, mostly. Given that his most common subject is... himself, that's not exactly true. But he doesn't share that with all that many, which is part of the point, right? "Given some of the cases you've pursued," he says, munching on that apple turnover.

For her part, Aunt May seems intent on making sure that everyone at the party has their fair share of the rather voluminous amount of food she has helped prepare pushed on them, and while she might start with those familiar faces that were such a staple of Peter's life growing up, it isn't long before she is out there, scolding just about everyone to try one or two of the treats she has prepared.

The sight of the older woman haranguing Gwen's model friends to try some of the baked goods is worth the price of admission all on its own. Moreso because it's free, admittedly. But still!

Before they can go very far at all, Tony is joining them there by those tables laden down with all the varieties of food and despite that proximity, Pete still steals one of the cookies from Gwen's tray with a smug sort of smile. "It's my birthday," he points out.

Apparently he has gotten over the whole, don't make a fuss thing. That it's no big deal. At least if it is justification to purloin a few ill-gotten baked goods at any rate.

Aunt May seems suitably flustered to meet Tony, and she gives a laugh. "Oh go on with yourself. I had no idea that Peter was doing any sort of work for you. You should have told me," she chides her nephew with a smile. "I'm glad you're getting back into more scientific endeavors Peter," she adds.

"It's my pleasure. It's good to keep a hand in things, every now and then. Put my degree to some use," Pete offers with a smile and nod for Tony. "I like photography and all, but science is always going to be the first love afterall," he admits. "And I'd like that. I'll definitely make time, it's just been a little crazy as of late," he admits. As one of the rare few who actually knows who Peter is, the billionaire is likely to have some idea about that.
Ghost Spider has posed:
Gwen, for her part, without pressing hostess duties to attend to, seems pleased to mostly become one with the crowd and let Peter have his conversations.

She never sets the tray of chocolate chip cookies down, apparently perfectly content to let people amble by and grab one while she held it, greeted them warmly, and returned her attention to the conversations in front of her.

"I'm glad to see Peter spending more time with the sciences, too," she chimes in, eyes shifting sideways over to him as a grin tugs on her lips. Of course she was. She'd been (gently) planting some seeds nudging him that direction.

Just as she finishes, several of Gwen's friends from the fashion industry, all strikingly dressed, come up to Peter to offer their well-wishes, introducing themselves with grace and charm. They talk about having heard so much about him and how honored they are to be part of this special occasion.

So, yes... maybe Gwen talked about him a little. Or maybe a lot.

She doesn't even bother offering them a cookie from the tray, though, just telling them she's glad they came before they mingle back into the crowd.
Firestar has posed:
Late isn't exactly a new situtation, but that's where Angelica finds herself. Unfortunately, there is very little fashionable about the young mutant. She walks in with her purse over one shoulder and holding a gift bag in the opposite hand.

She sees the crowd around Peter and her eyes widen a little bit and she smiles. It is good to see her friend being just another guy and nice to see a few ladies paying him some attention too.

Her eyes move towards Gwen and she offers a nod in greeting moving her general direction. That gets a bit...interrupted when she sees Aunt May. Her footsteps changing yet again to so and see the nicest woman in the world.
Spider-Man has posed:
While Peter can be more then a little stubborn about a few things, he isn't exactly reluctant to take good advice from those that he trusts.

And he definitely trusts Gwen. Besides, it isn't exactly difficult to persuade him that maybe, just maybe, science offers him a path path to the future then photography. Doing something meaningful, maybe building something that matters seems a better option then continuing to feed Jameson's obsession with Spider-Man. Just because it is relatively easy money.

It is definitely something to think about, despite some of the risks and uncertainties in the idea of venturing off the beaten path and trying to start a business of his own.

Even with the best of partners.

"I know, I know," Pete agrees, flashing Gwen a grin once more. "Trust me, it is one of the main things on his mind." he assures her.

Well, at least most of the time.

Turning back to her friends, a wry smile slips over his face, perhaps remembering the little night at the fashion show with more then a little fondness. "Hopefully it is mostly good things," he says, exchanging a few polite pleasantries before they are off -- no doubt having a small trail of interested parties in pursuit in short order.

As for Aunt May, she continues to do her own part in making sure everyone is well fed, thanking everyone for coming. At least until Angel ventures over. "Angelica dear, it is so nice to see you here," the older woman enthuses, seizing the young woman's hands warmly before immediately drawing her towards one of the tables laden down with baked goods. "Peter will be so happy to see you. Here, have a turnover."

May has apparently made it her mission to insure that everyone who passes through the museum tonight has at least some of her baking. It seems to be going pretty well thus far.
Ghost Spider has posed:
"I know, too," Gwen answers Peter with a gentle smile. "I'm not trying to push. Just so long as it's one of them."

But really, that's as far as she'd be willing to take the conversation at his birthday party, anyway. It wasn't a time to make Peter dwell on heavy stuff like future career choices and life-changing decisions.. now was the time for fun!

She let her eyes wander while Peter was otherwise occupied with her friends and made eye contact with Angelica when she arrived, returning that nod with a pleasant -- if unfamiliar -- smile of her own that followed her path as it veered over to Aunt May.

Interesting! More of Peter's friends that were familiar with May that she hadn't met, yet!

Then her friends are gone, leaving Peter and Gwen a moment of peace amid the music, the mingling, the peddling of baked goods, to step around in front of him, shift the tray of cookies she was holding out of the way, and lean up to kiss him. It's brief, but it's definitely an attempt to sneak just a small, private moment out of the middle of the chaos.

"At some point I need to catch up with Harry and thank him for helping arrange the venue. And someone else just came in," she mentions quietly. "Still holding up?" She smirks. Of the two of them, she was definitely the social butterfly, but Peter kept surprising her over and over again with his ability to hang in there with the 'happily extroverted' crowd.

Only a moment later, though, she's nudging Peter and heading towards Aunt May's area again, offering a hand towards Angelica.

"Hi! I don't think we've met. I'm Gwen."
Firestar has posed:
The joy in Angelica's eyes when she engages with Aunt May is beyond words. The aging woman meaning so much to her in days past and moreso now. She gently holds hands with the elder lady and lets her head the way to the pastries.

She sets the bag down on the table and looks at the pastries with a shake of her head. Not that she will try to resist Aunt May, just knowing what sort of work out this will take,"Past the lips, through the gums, look out booty here it comes." she comments at her own expense.

Still staying near Aunt May, she moves her attention to Gwen's approach. She switches hands with the pastry and takes the offered hand,"Hi Gwen. I'm Angelica. Angel if you like." She looks towards Peter and smiles,"Whatever you've done to our Pete, you need to keep doing it. I haven't witness that smile in a long time."
Spider-Man has posed:
He is not exactly the same, shy, retreating kid he was back in high school. Before that Spider-bite.

Hey, in college he was even known to even go to the odd party or two. Though admittedly that probably had a little something to do with rooming with Harry. The only reason he didn't venture out to more was probably because of all the one's hosted in their apartment!

Being Harry's roommate definitely came with a few additional issues, some good, some not so. Still, he doesn't see his old friend quite enough these days -- which has far more to do with himself then anything else. Who knows? Maybe that will change as well, since he's leaving himself open to some pretty big shifts.

"We definitely need to make some time to chat with him and Liz and the others," he agrees with a smile before following his gaze back towards his Aunt and catching just who she's talking with. "Ooooh, hey, if you haven't met her you definitely should," he agrees, starting back over.

Introductions are exchanged and Pete leans in to hug Angelica, laughing quietly before nudging her lightly in the shoulder as he takes a step back. "Mmmm, well, as... complicated as things might be as of late I have a few things to smile about these days," he counters wryly. "So glad you could slip a way for this. Angel and I go way back," he admits..
Ghost Spider has posed:
Some women might get jealous over their boyfriend hugging an unfamiliar woman and explaining that they 'go way back,' but Gwen just... doesn't. She doesn't even have that haughty, confidently possessive air about it. She just seems genuinely pleased to meet someone new that Peter likes that well.

"It's a pleasure to meet you, Angel, but the smiling's all him. All I did was remind him how awesome he is... which is also all him. So, I'm really just here to help hand out May's cookies. Speaking of which..."

Gwen lowers that tray, waving it temptingly as she smiles.

"...can I interest you in a chocolate chip cookie?"

Was she trying to earn points with May? Maybe. Whether or not she /needed/ them, it never hurt to be on her /extra/ good side.

Or maybe she just really believed that much in the power and deliciousness of May's cookies.
Firestar has posed:
Pressing a quick peck of a kiss on his cheek Angelica tells Peter,"Happy Birthday my friend. Enjoy a day and let stress settle until tomorrow." She steps back a little and gives him a smile.

Her attention moves to Gwen and she nods,"My pleasure." she replies and the considers,"The man needs two things always. Someone to make sure he knows how great he is and someone to make sure he ate something any given day." She pauses and then take a cookie,"I need to find a new workout partner because I am going to be needing to burn a lot of calories in the days coming up. Thank you." she tell Gwen with a smirk.
Spider-Man has posed:
It's not like Peter needed any more evidence of just how cool Gwen is, of course.

That's always been pretty apparent of course, even going back their college days. But it has only become that much more apparent. "Just be careful not to inflate the ol' ego too much," he says with a quiet laugh, beaming at Angelica for just a moment before moving back to Gwen's side, slipping a hand into her free hand and reaching over to steal another cookie.

Apparently he is less concerned with finding a workout partner. Maybe because of that Spider-metabolism. Maybe because they seem to be crawling out of the woodwork to seek him out. Or at least his costumed alter ego at any rate. "You should definitely have one. Everything's delicious," he notes, casting a sly look over towards Auny May who naturally is looking on approvingly, her mission temporarily set aside as she watches the trio with a bright smile. At least until Harry, Liz and the others descend upon her, chatting animatedly.

It is definitely a reminder of times past for sure. Everyone does have a tendancy to look back, to put a golden hue over everything. He knows well that he didn't always do the best job at being there for his friends, at least for the small things, back then either. Still.

It makes for a nice evening to see everyone in one place.
Ghost Spider has posed:
Gwen bites her lip after Angelica's assessment of a man's needs, a hint of color arriving just at the edges of her cheeks as she ventures a mildly sheepish look up at Peter. Memories of rooftop sandwiches and concert churros flashing across her eyes.

Maybe it was such a natural thing that it had become engrained in her. For most of her life, it had just been her and her father, and for as much as he absolutely took care of her, she'd spent time taking care of him, too...

...something she didn't really spend enough time thinking about.

That smile of Gwen's flickers, a ghost of that darker thought haunting her expression for just a second before Peter's hand slips into hers and she laces her fingers together with his. As soon as they're touching, that smile is back, and Gwen's attention returns to Angelica.

"Be careful what you wish for. I might be your new gym partner, if May has her way. I've got a pretty healthy metabolism, but even I have to draw the line somewhere." Her blue eyes sparkle with mirth. "Oh.. there's Harry. Would you mind excusing us for just a second? Harry was the one that helped us get the space, and I need to catch him before he runs off. We'll be back..."

But then she's tugging at Peter again, doing her social butterfly impersonation and moving through the crowd...